TALK ENGLISH began in August 2005. Two recently CELTA-trained teachers offered extra lessons to their adult teaching practice students who were French-speaking refugees from DRC and Rwanda. Addington Primary School in the Point area of Durban, which many refugee children attend, offered the use of their classrooms on Saturday mornings. Need was great and the project grew in response. Currently about 80 students are taught by more than 15 volunteer teachers - still many Congolese refugees, but also immigrants from various other countries, joined by a growing number of South Africans.
Read the Aug/Sept 2007 newsletter
In 2008 TALK ENGLISH became a Non-Profit Organisation.
Read the April/May 2008 newsletter
Read the May 2009 newsletter
In 2011 during a strategic planning meeting, teachers decided they wanted TALK ENGLISH to develop and grow.
In 2012 TALK ENGLISH held the first courses at Addington Primary School for children who needed better English in order to cope educationally and socially. Children were a mixture of South African isiZulu and refugee French speakers. Also Refugee Social Services (RSS) asked TALK ENGLISH teachers to teach basic classroom English to groups of French-speaking refugee children about to attend South African schools.
In 2013 some teachers provide English enrichment lessons to young people in a township High School.
TALK ENGLISH has resolved many practical problems since 2005, such as the wide range of ages and literacy levels in each class, large student numbers, on-going new enrolments and attrition. We do not turn anyone away, which means curriculum continuity must be balanced with the need for drop-in, stand-alone lessons.
From a small volunteer group we are gradually evolving into a serious non-profit organisation, with a widely recognised body of experience and expertise. Our dream is to increasingly use our learning, skills and expertise to help the many South African children and adults who need to speak better English for their studies and work.